Description: After hearing rumors about 'Death' roaming about in a certain area, Kiyomi investigates on it and offers the creature she meets a chance to join Kiyomi's extended family.
For the more mundane people who aren't up to date on the supernatural, several campers outside of Metro City came up missing within the last few days. One or two have been found dead. Those who ARE believers in the supernatural say that literally Death himself is prowling these woods. A reports or two of a man in a long, flowing robe, with a scythe, whose face looks like a skull, have surfaced.
So it's not really hard to track Testament's progress. Having recently gotten a new start of things thanks to being invigorated by the fight at Sound Beach, Testament's been up to his old tricks again! What will he get up to next, the wily scamp~?
Sooner or later, the trail of death left behind by Testament will draw the ire of hunters and the attention of humans. Someone might eventually end up in his way to stop him and end his existence definately. That is why Kiyomi has to find this mysterious creature before hunters stumble upon him and his destructive ways end up putting him in bad posture.
Kiyomi was used to track down her own kin. She had to, if she wanted to find those who hid in the dark to help them before hunters would find them. This particular darkstaler was not subtle in the least in his actions. Kiyomi came across his track by pure chance when she had to come to America and it caught her attention.
In her snow fox form, the kitsune followed the hints left behind by him until it would lead it to him, searching for him in the outskirt of the city, letting her nose guide her once she managed to catch its scent.
The 'tracks', if they could be called that, were pretty easy to follow. The trail of death led to a particular place, a particular clearing in the woods that held a large oak tree. Clearly this Darkstalker, whoever he was, didn't care about hiding his deeds. He was here to cause as much trouble as possible.
And that scent. That SCENT. Blood. Not necessarily the blood of victims, either. THAT blood smells normal. But the other blood... it smells rancid and poisonous. Artificial. That's really the only way to describe it-- artificial. Something created.
Regardless it'll lead Kiyomi fairly quickly to the oak tree clearing. At first all that's visible is the raven. Red eyes and black plumage, but a thin, silver collar around her neck. The raven tiltsits head to look at her, emitting a quiet 'awk?' that sounds for all the world like a question.
All darkstalkers were unique in their very own way -- some were oppressed pacifist who hid away from humanity and others fought back against those who feared and oppressed them. The unusual scent that came from the trail of blood Kiyomi was able to follow was a good hint about the nature of the being she tracked down.
The slender snow fox makes her way into the clearing, nostrils of her muzzle constantly twitching as she inhales the scent and follows it. While the built of the vixen is slender and agile, it is definately larger than one would expect from a fox, more akin to wolf. A thin veil of illusion covers her most particular features, the myriad of tails that comes with her, as well as the objects she carries tied around her back.
The fox seems to reply to the raven by tilting its head back and staring up at the creature. There was a glee of cunning and intelligence in this animal that betrays the fox's true nature.
Kiyomi stares at the raven, noticing the unusual collar. The fox slowly morphs itself into an humanoid, its feature turning into those of a beautiful mature woman, raven hair flowing down her torso. She rises to her full height after a few seconds, her fur and animalistic features fading away completly.
The clothes that she carried with her happens to be a kimono and the woman dons it over her pale skin, "Are you the one that sowed so many deaths in its path?" She asks to the raven, as if she was expecting it could answer her.
Perhaps the raven can indeed answer her! But it won't get the opportunity to. Not because something happens to it, no. There is a low laugh from higher up the tree, and the raven tilts its head up to look. It's a man's laugh, on the lower end of the tenor scale, and has a metallic grain to it-- that artificial nature rears its ugly head here. And he scent of that rancid blood intensifies.
The raven takes wing, not AWAY from the sound, but TOWARDS it. And the shadows themselves seem to part away from a man sitting in the upper branches of the tree. Pale skin--and there's quite a bit of it on display-- black hair, and black clothes. He wears not a robe but something like a bandeau top and a kilt. But second-hand reports that are heard from people who weren't therewho in turn heard them from people who were frightened out of their wits tend to be less than accurate.
But the man has an answer for that question. "I did that." He almost seems like he's bragging. Letting one leg hang off of the branch, he turns his head slowly to regard her with a rather mad smile. Oddly, the PUPILS of his eyes are red, in addition to the irises. At least the whites of his eyes are normal.
"Why? Have you come to stop me?" he inquires. He has a guttural inflection ot his words. "Come to be the hero that takes on the monster in the forests...?" He starts to laugh.
The laughter causes Kiyomi to arch a brow and her eyes follow the flying raven who makes its way toward the man who's higher up the oak tree. Her nose wrinkle a bit as she feels the thicker musk invading her nostrils but she hardly reacts more to it : a gentle smile spreads on her cheeks as she hears the man's intonation. His voice made him sound like a young boy who proudly bragged about his actions.
Apparently Kiyomi was wrong about the raven, though it seems to be his pet. That would explain the collar around its neck. The woman tightens up her kimono and she lowers her eyes, folding her arms into her sleeves. "No," She replies softly, "I did not,"
Her voice is oddly calm and serene for someone who ends up face to face with a murderer : Testament was not the first such darkstalker Kiyomi had met, after all. She does not hide her features from him : not from one of her brethren. Her long fluffly tails slowly sway behind her, spread out like a wind fan. Two white feline ears atop her head contrasts with her raven hair.
Kiyomi arches a brow and lifts her eyes back at Testament, "Is that how you see yourself? A monster?" She asks with a gentle frown, as if his words saddened her, "Or did you come to believe you were because people kept telling that you were one?"
"So not to kill the monster by fighting him, but to talk him down?" Testament inquires. His laugh is an unhinged cackle. It's reasonable to assume that people have tried this, and with that laugh the reason why it hasn't worked yet is apparent. "You wouldn't be the first to try that," he confirms.
As for seeing himself as a monster? He turns on the branch, though remains in the tree, and holds out his palms as if to show Kiyomi something in them. Or perhaps on them. There's nothing there, but his fingers are long and spindly and his nails are abnormally long.
"They MADE me one!" he hisses, curling those hands into fists before him. "They tried to make me into a mindless drone, so I could be made to fight THEIR wars! And then tried to KILL ME when it failed!" His anger isn't aimed at her, though. He abruptly quiets. "But I can't die, not even to my own hands. I've tried."
The vixen slowly lowers her gaze at Testament's laughter and retort. She shakes her head slowly, almost in disbelief. He was a poor sight to behold : his mysery makes her shiver. He was not the first, nor the last Kiyomi would meet that had his life forever changed by humans but everytime she hears bits of their story it makes her her heart heavy with sorrow and fuels her own hate toward humanity.
"I am not here to talk you down either," Kiyomi says in a soft murmur. She remains quiet as she listnes to Testament, feeling his anger in his voice. When his voice dies down, Kiyomi frowns and lifts her gaze back up to him. Her lips curl into a gentle and compassionate smile, "I came here for you, not to stop you, nor talk you down, but to give you support... And let you know you are not alone," Kiyomi says.
She gestures with her hand and says, "Why don't you come down here, with me?" She asks. A soft chuckle escape her throat and she says, "Looking high up is not good for my neck," She admits.
And Testament meets her words with utter silence.
He seems confused. A moment of awkward silence passes, and he looks at the raven now on his shoulder. The two exchange a look. And it looks like the raven actually shrugs, as if to say 'damned if I know'. Clearly no one's thought to try to commiserate with the 'monster'.
Kiyomi asks him to come down from the tree, and he does. The raven takes off from his shoulder as he hops down easily from the higher branches, only to settle there again when he lands. He eyes Kiyomi suspiciously, tiltng his head to regard her out of the corner of one eye.
"So... what's the catch?" he inquires. No, he doesn't really trust others unless they're hitting him, because at least then he knows they're being honest. If they're talking to him, he doesn't know if they're trying to trick him.
Kiyomi waits silently near the tree, staring at Testament as he seems to seek guidance from his raven. Her lips curl into a gentle smile once Testament climbs down the tree to meet her. There was no hint of malice in Kiyomi's facial expression : only genuine care and empathy toward Testament. She bows her head respectfully when he comes to her side, down the tree.
"There is no catch," Kiyomi says as she straightens herself up. Her features softened up, thinking of all the suffering he must have come through to be so wairy of her. Most darkstalkers were like that though, considering what happened to them in their lives. "You are not the only one who have suffered at the hands of humans, you are not alone..." Kiyomi says softly.
Heaving a soft sigh, she lowers her gaze, "I feel your suffering and it pains me." She admits, "I wish, like I have for many before you, to help you alleviate some of your burden, offer you a way to find some comfort," Kiyomi lifts her gaze up and she smiles, "We call ourself the Children of the Night : a pack of darkstalkers who, like you, have all suffered dearly at the hands of humans. We seek others like us, to fight against humanity, and look for one another,"
Testament is not alone, and he knows. "But those I've met just seem to accept it. That their lot from humans is to forever be harassed and there's no hope of changing that." He seems to SEETHE briefly at that thought, baring teeth and emitting a growl. But it passes quickly, and he exhales a calming breath.
Though the rest of her pitch gets a blink. It's a moment of thought. And then he smiles. It's not the mad smile from before, but a genuinely happy smile. His voice is quiet, but pleased. "So there ARE Darkstalkers willing to stand up and kick back when humans start kicking them."
He seems to calm here, and offers a polite bow. "...My name is Testament." A look to the raven. "This is Tset." Not her real name, certainly, but her name holds power, so he's not going to give it out yet.
Her gentle smile on her lips never fade away : Kiyomi lowers her head, averting her gaze a moment as she replies, "Not all darkstalkers have the strength to fight back against those who oppress them... Nor do they all possess the will to fight back," Her voice is soft, yet there's obvious sadness in admitting such a thing.
The woman slowly shakes her head and lifts her eyes back to Testament, "I do not judge them. We all have our own past and history." Her expression brightens a bit as she adds, "I offer shelter to those who've had enough to run, soothe and heal those who have been injuried by humans..."
Her tails idly sway behind her and her expression becomes more severe, "But I also defend my brethrens by fighting back, and welcome everyone who wishes to kill humans..."
Kiyomi bows her head gently to Testament, "It's a pleasure, Testament..." She glances at Tset, "And to Tset too," She says. "My name is Kiyomi : though most call me Lady Renard," She admits, "I lead a group of Darkstalkers who strives to eradicate the human threat to us. We call ourselves the Children of the Night,"
Kiyomi tilts her head to one side and asks, "Would you like to stay with us and travel with us for a while, Testament? See the life of a pack?"
Testament remains quiet as Kiyomi explains. About the Darkstalkers, about herself, and about where she and her 'Children of the Night' fit into things. "No. I know there are those who can't fight back for some reason," he agrees, quietly. An uncomfortable memory flashes through his mind, gone before he can really grasp it. Of ridicule, of pain. And then a more recent one, one of the mindless people who'd been changed into basically living machines. Like they tried to do to him...
And then that invitation. A smirk. "...You would have me with you, knowing that I was once a human?" he inquires. "That I'm cut from the same cloth that you'd see torn around your pack's claws?"
Whether or not they could join her in her crusade, Kiyomi loved and cared for all other darkstalkers. She took it upon herself to use the power and strength she had to defend others like her who lacked the strength to do so. For those who can fight back? She welcomes them with open arms to follow her.
Kiyomi frowns at Testament's question, "What do you consider yourself to be, now?" Kiyomi asks, arching a brow. "This word... Darkstalkers... What do you think it means?" Kiyomi asks. The woman smiles at Testament and says, "Darkstalkers are all those forsaken by humanity : everything humans fears because of our differences," The woman shrugs and says, "Had I not tails, wouldn't that just make me human?" Kiyomi asks, tilting her head to one side. For a Darkstalker, she did have quite a human appearance.
The woman hums softly and asks, "What happened to you that made you lost that humanity? That made you want to kill humans so?" Kiyomi asks, "You do, after all, look alike them enough to be able to pass as one of them..."
"'Darkstalker'..." Testament tries the word out. It's a word he remembers. Somewhere in that nebulous mass of half-remembered pictures and words, that word sits. Badly. Atop of mound of corpses. He shakes his head. "I don't have pleasant memories of that word. But I suppose I am one now... so I've little to fear..."
What does it mean to him? "...It means something else beyond that... something that I can't quite grasp. I have a past with that word. But I can't... quite... remember..." He sighs. "Never mind." Smirk. "I'm told I'm insane, this is likely part of it."
As for what made him want to kill humans? "They tried to turn me into a puppet. But I kept my sense. And then they wanted to put me back under when they realized it, so they could finish the job. If I am a 'monster', it was one humans made."
But the mention that he looks close enough to pass as human gets a chuckle. He doesn't take it as an insult, because he knows it's true. Still... "Maybe until I spoke. Your ears should be sharp enough to hear it... my voice sounds artificial. My eyes... they aren't normal." It's true, his voice has a metallic grain to it, and his eyes... they're red. Not just the iris, but the pupil too.
Kiyomi shakes her head slowly, "Monsters, demons, darkstalkers... They're all names humans would give us. We do have one thing in common : the fear we strike in human's heart, and for that reason, they will oppress us and chase us," Kiyomi explains.
She lifts her right hand up, gesturing idly, "Some will see us as a threat due to their fear of us, others will see a way to harness this fear for them to dominate other humans, a mean to power..." Kiyomi shakes her head and she lifts her hand up, offering it palm open to Testament, "You are no monster to me -- it is but a label given to you by them, and the worst that can happen is that you start believing what they say,"
Kiyomi bites her lips and she says, "Come with me, Testament," Kiyomi tilts her head to one side and says, "If life taught me one thing is that the hardship of life are easier to bear with others... Let us help you, join our family..." Her smile widens, a soft maternal look on her face as she adds, "You might be able to find a place where you belong, a purpose with us..." Kiyomi offers.
"I know they're afraid. They have reason to be." Hard to tell if that's a thing that pleases Testament to say or not. "Though I always thought it ironic that we were the 'monsters' when they do such things to their own." He speaks not only of humans using fear to control their own kind, but what was done to himself.
And the offered hand? He smiles. "...Besides Tset, I've been alone since it happened. Might be nice to see if I Could fit in on the other side of the equation..."
Kiyomi smiles, "You can stay with us forever long as you desire -- we look for one another and support each other," Kiyomi explains with a slow nod of her head. Her smile widens a bit and she says, "I like to think they're more monsters than we are, really..."
The woman bites her lips and says, "Strength in unity, that is what I believe. With us, you might be able to find your path, and perhaps understand more about yourself..." Kiyomi says, mostly referring to what he has become since the humans changed him.
Kiyomi lowers her hand and she turns on her heels, lifting her head up to the sky. She closes her eyes and inhales softly, her tails gently swaying about behind her. She glances at Testament and grins, "If you haven't travelled around the world before, you will be able to see all of it with us,"
Understand more about himself? "...The UN knows what it did. If I could have gotten in to get their records when I went after them there, I might have been able to find out exactly what they did to me." He looks at one hand. "...And what they turned me into. If they made me into this... they might have some sort of failsafe inside me."
Though he does have one question. "What would you ask of me?" Testament inquires. He had some... odd quirks, after all. Like wandering off, saving children, his love of German potato salad. Things like that.
The kitsune blinks at his question, as if she was caught off guard. Her lips curl into a benevolent smile and she chuckles softly, "Nothing," She answers candidly. A soft and pensive hum escape her throat and she says, "I only expect you to treat your brethren and other Children of the Night much as you would like to be treated," Kiyomi explains.
"That is all that I expect of you if you wish to be part of us," The woman says with a slow nod of her head. "You have shown your will to fight on humans, and if you wish, you may join us in our battle. In due time, perhaps we could help you with what you seek," Kiyomi offers.
Testament nods. "Good. I'm not sure I could keep up with a great many expectations. I'm told I'm insane." And he doesn't sound like he doubts it at all. He doesn't elaborate though.
As for joining them? "I'll do what I can," he agrees. "I'll help you protect the rest of your pack as well as I can. I'm not sure what else I can offer."
"We shall see," Kiyomi says with a slow nod of her head. Her lips curl into a smile as she glances at Testament, "You may not be as insane as you think you are... Being with others might do you a world of good. With others just like you," Kiyomi says. Turning on her heels, Kiyomi slowly walks away, "Come with me, I'll introduce you to the rest of the others,"
Log created on 16:04:03 03/09/2015 by Kiyomi, and last modified on 03:11:47 04/06/2015.